Features, Labor News Briefs, National, New York

AFL-CIO Quits Trump Manufacturing Council

August 20, 2017

By Steve Wishnia and Neal Tepel

Washington—AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka quit President Trump’s Manufacturing Jobs Initiative council Aug. 15, saying he was doing it “on behalf of America’s working people, who reject all notions of legitimacy of these bigoted groups.” Trumka announced his decision a few hours after Trump told reporters that there were “very fine people” among the neo-Nazis who’d rallied in Charlottesville, Virginia the previous weekend, and that “both sides” were to blame for the violence, in which a neo-Nazi marcher killed a woman when he rammed his car into a crowd of counterprotesters. Five corporate executives on the panel also resigned in protest, and Trump dissolved it the next day, saying they were “not taking their job seriously.” Trumka, who said he’d hoped that the council would “result in positive economic policy,” told CBS News the next morning that it had never actually held a meeting, and was “a subterfuge to be able to deregulate industry.” Other union leaders also denounced the racist violence and Trump’s slow response, with Lee Saunders of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees saying “it’s disgraceful that it took two full days for the president of the United States to condemn white supremacists.” Read more

August 20, 2017

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